Bipartisan PRO IP Bill Turns White House Into Hollywood's Private Enforcement Agency

from the please-explain-why? dept

Every time you think that the tide is turning and people are beginning to realize the ridiculousness of overly burdensome IP laws, some politicians start doing the dirty work of Hollywood’s worst lobbyists. The latest may be the most ridiculous yet — though, it certainly wasn’t unexpected. Remember how NBC Universal execs started whining about how law enforcement’s priorities were all screwed up, since they were focused on pointless things like burglary and bankrobbing rather than copyright violations? That was merely the starting point in a lobbying campaign for the new PRO IP (Prioritizing Resources and Organization for Intellectual Property Act) bill that has been introduced with backing of both top Republicans and Democrats. As the bill’s not particularly subtle name makes clear, this law is all about giving Hollywood much of what it has been asking for. Rather than decreasing the ridiculous fines that can be handed out for copyright infringement, this law would increase them. But, more importantly, it sets up a brand new gov’t agency within the executive branch to help crack down on “piracy.” This despite increasing evidence that “piracy” isn’t a problem for the economy at all — but rather a problem for a few big companies with obsolete business models (who just happen to have tremendous lobbying clout) who are too lazy to even bother trying to adapt to a changing market place. This bill isn’t just corporate welfare. It would be creating an entire government agency whose sole job it would be to protect the unnecessary and obsolete business model of a few dying companies while stifling innovative tools and services at every turn. It would help to kill off our creative industries by falsely assuming that creativity needs to be funneled through a few big companies. It’s a disgusting travesty of the political process.

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Companies: mpaa, riaa

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Comments on “Bipartisan PRO IP Bill Turns White House Into Hollywood's Private Enforcement Agency”

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Ajax 4Hire (profile) says:

Illegal Immigration was not a problem in the US

10 years ago but it is today.

I don’t agree with the Hollywood types, DCMA, RIAA and their ilk but I also do not agree with the government passing laws and not enforcing them.

There is nothing new in this law.
Simply fund the agencies that police the laws.
Again this is sample of US government in action;
Do nothing about current laws, just pass more laws.
Do nothing to enforce existing laws.
Soon the burden, the weight of the entire US Legal System will be more than the world can bare. The US will collapse not by apathy, invasion, technology or disaster; The US will colapse under its own weight in laws, nothing will be possible without law suit. The US is getting close.

Doug says:

Re: Re: Illegal Immigration was not a problem in t

Sounds good, but only if you reciprocate and give up things the rest of the world invented – TV, telephones, penicillin . . . those are just off the top of my head (can you tell I’m Scottish ;). You are unbelievably arrogant and ignorant if you think the US is the sole or even most significant innovator in the world.

Blind patriotism for the FAIL.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Re: Illegal Immigration was not a problem

“Sounds good, but only if you reciprocate and give up things the rest of the world invented – TV, telephones, penicillin . . . those are just off the top of my head”

He’d also have to give up computers (invented by an Englishman, Charles Babbage), AC Current and radio (invented by Nikola Tesla, who was Serbian), electric motors (Michael Faraday, another Englishman), batteries, (Alessandro Volta, Italian), and several other things.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Illegal Immigration was not a problem in t

You are the embodiment of the American idiot. I could do without the broken healthcare, the IP system where the lawyers win instead of the actual innovators, the corporate puppets that sit in public offices everywhere, the illusion of control for the common man…just the top of the list.

The MPAA and RIAA will not rest until they either run out of money, or are legally permitted (or even better, required) to search everyones computer for pirated material.

Being critical of our nation is not saying you want to leave it, or should leave it. It’s important that someone take their nose from the grindstone long enough to recognize that our country needs improvement and soon. The “we need to control spending, but we need to fight for ‘freedom’ in Iraq, or and hey, while we’re over there, Iran too” line doesn’t fly with me. With an Oil man at the helm, and a defense contractor as his first mate, where do you think this boat is headed? Iran, it seems, despite our own intelligence.

If you were an international terrorist, where would you be? Fighting one of the most powerful military in the world? Or quietly submerging yourself into our society in preparation for your next attack?

The war for “Freedom” is a joke, its a war to dupe the American tax payer out of their money and put it in the pockets of the powerful.

We the people…need to wake up and take this country back from big business.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Illegal Immigration was not a problem in the U

Illegal Immigration still isn’t the problem, and it never has been, and probably never will be. The “problem” is why people want to enter, illegally or not, America in the first place.

The parallels with copyright infringement/piracy should be obvious to anyone with half a brain.

Mediadeafener says:

How much money will that agency eat in 10 years?

Nice idea, that anti-piracy government agency. Soon they will come up with an encrypted P2P protocol, which will make it really hard to track down pirates and come up with believable lawsuits against them. How much money will such an agency need in 10 years, considering that it’s not only the police who evolve in fighting pirates, also the pirates come up with new ways to ensure their privacy.

I don’t see this bill serving the U.S. economy nor a democratic system of law; it serves the whims of a few corporate execs – and people who REALLY want to get rid of YOUR privacy. The only way they can catch pirates in the future will be demolishing any privacy in the internet completely. And even if they accomplished this, there’s still the rest of the world – most of which will never accept such laws. 1984 is supposed to be in the past.

Steve R. (profile) says:

Lack of Due Process

The demand of the content producers to force “enforcement responsibility” on third parties that facilitate distribution of that content violates due process. Based on what I have been reading, there is virtually no discussion questioning whether the content producers would even have a right to assert “ownership”. Just because someone says that they own somenting is not actual proof that they indeed own it.

We seem to be creating “law” where the content producers, without proof, can claim that they “own” content, can then force the so-called “infringer” to stop using the content, and can force a third party to assume an enforcement obligation that violates due process.

For example, suppose the RIAA tells a University network administrator that a certain song is “owned” by them. The University without proof then does something to the student and after extensive investigation, it is determined that the song was really in the public domain?

SteveD says:

Money = Power

I find it disturbing that media companies are steadily redefining IP laws to suit their business interests.

This is a debate that should be in the public domain involving artist, consumer and content providers. Instead it seems its being carried out by corporate lobby groups behind closed doors.

I don’t think I could be any more disillusioned with the media industry, or the Government.

Overcast says:

What a joke – guess what though, I STILL won’t buy CD’s.

Because – anymore, even playing them in your car, loud enough for someone to hear is ‘copyright infringement’ right? With all that, I think I best just stay away from copy written music. Best to be on the safe side, you’ve convinced me!!

If it’s not public domain, I’ll avoid it.

Scott_P says:

Stop Bitching

…and FAX your Congressman and Senators (email does no real good, but faxes for some odd reason get through). Let them know you will NOT vote for someone who would vote for this legislation. That also means you have to register to VOTE as well and follow through. All the lobbying in the world wont move a politician if they think it will cost them votes in a close election

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Stop Bitching

All the lobbying in the world wont move a politician if they think it will cost them votes in a close election

The extra votes they get due to the extra advertising they can buy with all the money and other support they get from Hollywood far, far outweighs the few they loose to a few “malcontents”, as they view them. And when they retire from politics they might get a nice cushy job from Hollywood too. How are you going to compete with that?

The Disseminating Machine says:



George W. Bush continuously criminally stalked Margie Schoedinger to the point that she could not get away from it, and she committed suicide in desperation to escape: he murdered her.

“In her suit, Margie Schoedinger states that George W. Bush committed sexual crimes against her, organized harassment and moral pressure on her, her family members and close relatives and friends. As Schoedinger said, she was strongly recommended to keep her mouth shut. . . . Furthermore, she alleges that George Bush ordered to show pressure on her to the point, when she commits suicide” (blog of drizzten).

“One of those very least were George Bush’s personal complicity in the death (murder to be precise) of my friend Margie Schoedinger in September of 2003” (Leola McConnell (Nevada Progressive Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate in 2010)).

Leola McConnell is correct: Bush applying pressure (continuously criminally stalking Margie Schoedinger) purposefully to force Margie Schoedinger to commit suicide does in fact constitute murder.

BEWARE: If the president of the United States hates one—for whatever reasons—he can continuously criminally stalk one to the point that one cannot get away from it, and one ultimately commits suicide in desperation to escape. He can murder people in this way.

Bush is getting away with his murder of Margie Schoedinger—with no sheriff, prosecutor, or court willing to uphold the rule of law.

Bush’s method of murdering Margie Schoedinger cannot exist in a vacuum: he must have murdered other people in the same way.

Bush should confess, come out with the names of all of the people whom he murdered in the disgusting way he murdered Margie Schoedinger, undergo execution, and accordingly find himself at the intersection where he would be free.

(There are thousands of copies of the information above on the Internet. It exists very extensively in all major search engines. Please feel free to go to any major search engine, type “George W. Bush continuously criminally stalked Margie Schoedinger to the point that she could not get away from it, and she committed suicide in desperation to escape: he murdered her,” hit “Enter,” and find innumerable results.)
Andrew Y. Wang
B.S., Summa Cum Laude, 1996
Messiah College, Grantham, PA
Lower Merion High School, Ardmore, PA, 1993

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